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Author Topic: VIDEO: HIV Cells  (Read 3055 times)

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Offline datdude

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  • Posts: 71
« on: May 27, 2008, 12:40:40 PM »
HIV, the virus that triggers AIDS, may be more diverse and difficult to control than researchers had previously envisioned.

For the first time Brigham Young University and Johns Hopkins researchers have removed an elegant cell that allows the AIDS-producing virus to sit in waiting like a Trojan Horse.

It’s one Dr. Greg Burton refers to as the Cinderella cell.

Burton and biologist Keith Crandall say this latest Brigham Young /Johns Hopkins study reveals what could be the most cunning trick yet.

From electron microscope photos, courtesy of Andras Szakal, the rare follicular dendritic cells can be seen.

They’re like branch libraries, retaining on octopus-like tentacles bits and pieces of agents the immune system needs to remember and build antibodies against when needed.

But HIV has learned how to hide there, waiting, while they’re not infecting anything.

That is, until a cell rubs against the arms, checking to see what the library has saved from other infections.

“It’s almost like they come up and have an intimate embrace, and in the process of that embrace, there’s a knife that goes in the back of that cell that now is going to become infected,” Burton said.

Now, from this rare so-called library cell it trusts implicitly to stay on guard, the worst invader of all is passed on unknowingly.

“This is the first study in which people have gone in and actually taken out these cells and characterized the virus on the individual cells from the different sites where they live,” Burton explained.

These hiding places are called reservoirs.

Researchers now want to explore ways to attack the virus in the very pockets where they hide.

The BYU-Johns Hopkins study will appear in the June issue of the Journal of Virology.


Offline datdude

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Re: VIDEO: HIV Cells
« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2008, 07:33:16 AM »
Scientists Break Into HIV 'Hideout'                                                    WEDNESDAY, May 28 (HealthDay News) -- Researchers have confirmed that a certain type of cell provides a "hideout" for HIV during drug treatment and is a reservoir of HIV in humans.
These follicular dendritic cells (FDCs) are located throughout the body in specialized sites known as lymphoid tissues, said researchers at Brigham Young University and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.

FDCs act as "vaults" to store material needed to maintain the immune system's legions of antibodies. When there's a drop in a particular kind of antibody, FDCs release proteins that trigger an immune response to increase levels of those antibodies.

The researchers discovered that FDCs have such an effective vault mechanism that HIV can remain out of reach of drugs flowing through the blood stream. This finding that FDCs harbor HIV may help scientists find ways to attack HIV taking shelter in these reservoir cells.

The study was expected to be published in the June issue of the Journal of Virology.

"One of the biggest obstacles in treating patients with HIV is the establishment of these reservoirs that resist treatment," principal investigator Greg Burton, a BYU biochemistry professor, said in a prepared statement. "The ability to understand the virus in these reservoirs, and to characterize the reservoir itself, provides information with which we can begin to try to devise strategies that target the virus in these reservoirs."

Previous research has shown that two other types of cells -- macrophages and latently infected CD4+ T-cells -- are reservoirs of HIV. It was suspected that FDCs also acted as HIV reservoirs, and this new study confirmed that suspicion.



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